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Will Ferrell and Kristen Wiig’s Lifetime Movie A Deadly Adoption Explained

“A Deadly Adoption” was produced by Gary Sanchez Productions, Will Ferrell’s former production company. The film is as serious as it gets, which is part of the charm, or rather, the joke. Both Ferrell and Kristen Wiig used the opportunity to legitimize the convoluted narrative while also playing their characters with the right temperament. For some, the joke is that Ferrell and Wiig aren’t making their joke obvious. “Kind of my perfect idea of a parody: formally an exact facsimile and otherwise so slightly exaggerated that you might not notice,” wrote Letterboxd user matt lynch. 

The film’s trailer (seen above) perfectly depicts the tone and structure of the Lifetime movie, letting audiences know that they shouldn’t expect something funny. Ferrell is definitely a comedic genius, and “A Deadly Adoption” proves that he’s also a master troller. During a panel at the ATX Television Festival (via Deadline), Ferrell expressed that the intention was to subvert expectations and create something so jarring that it puts viewers off. “[It’s] one of my favorite things I’ve ever made, partly because it completely baffles maybe 80 percent of the audience,” the actor said.

Nothing is more jarring than the film’s ending, which features Ferrell and Wiig’s character joyfully dancing for nearly a minute. While Wiig has broken character on “Saturday Night Live,” she and Ferrell remain in character for the insane ending, playing up just how chaotic (and unserious) Lifetime movies can be. 

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